work-horse etiquette

1. drinking water
in open jar
one quart at a time

2. hiv/aids activist protests in capetown
i learn
how much power
bright colors and movement and song
can bring to
acts of resistance

3. more work-horse etiquette
more often

4. hum of ceiling fan
inviting me into sleep
wind chasing itself

5. tears in eyes:
in movie theater dark
under sun on bike
in work bathroom mirror

6. bike bouquet and note
you could not have been
more perfectly timed

7. broken:
waterglass in dining area
she apologizes
i tell her it happens all the

8. broken:
white ceramic plates
falling to concrete
in dish pit
fabulous sound
fabulous slow-motion descent

9. black sports bra
whitepink jean skirt
bare feet

10. my mother of millions
plant of fear
sharing garden plot
with the endless pit of need

11. goat gouda
on rice crackers

12. moon
soft haze of light
under cloud spread thin

threading the shape of wings



1. following the wide river
that welcomed us home
from halfway across the country

2. cutting sleeves
and stitching
maroon on mint green
threading the shape of an ekg/seismegraph reading
threading the shape of wings

3. out of the following choices:
more difficult
we choose the latter

4. pool of the winds
corinne swims the crashing cold
if it doesn’t kill me
i have to go in

5. how the wind sounds
through trees
2100 feet up
a blessing

6. (hi minna)

7. dust of dry forest
on scraped leg
under nails

8. yellow toothpick umbrella
in fresh squeezed mint lemonade
back porch
half moon
thin maroon tshirt
gathered in fist

9. hugging myself
as the view spills open
breath comes from some place
below me

10. how crashing water
from far away
moves so white and slow






remembering poprock kisses

1. stevie wonder
signed sealed delivered
i’m yours
makes the kitchen
a better place

2. knife in hand
reducing purple cabbage
to ribbons

3. the pause between
mistake of blade on skin
actual rise of blood to surface

4. remembering poprock kisses
amongst the birds of paradise
awoken by sunday morning church in the pavillion

5. shannon, amelia, trillium
a toast to the great
emotional passage
the image:
a watercolor boat

6. soaping off
thin film
of grease
plastic black comb
through shower-wet hair

7. shannon, lauren, naomi
in the car outside
a kind of homecoming
arms i didn’t know
i was longing
to fall into
i didn’t know
i was aching to release

8. cold hand
on strong small neck
a taste
of cool water rushing

9. u people
queer documentary film project
my heart a firework
my brain firing synpases
chest cavity swelling
implosion of joy

10. first dinner: cucumber
second dinner: salad on rice
third dinner: sushi and seaweed

11. holes cut into memory
old neighborhood
though i no longer
these streets

12. walter
the sometimes snoring boston terrier
in my bed

stutters in the orchestration of time

1. morning dream
inside the arms of my hug
ridge of spine rising up through coat
underneath my palm
sunglasses covering eyes

2. is it true
i go most of the day
without eating?

3. i’m convinced that our dishwasher servicers
have all been hired
from the 1950’s.
that milk-man smile.
a cheer that seems so ironic
i inspect it closely for frays.
but still, i am pulled in.

4. punched-in at 8:04.
besides my coconut water
in the reach-in
and matthew’s purple fedora
and jon’s joke about burning man
there is no poetry here

5. tears in david’s eyes
at the counter
as he talks about
volunteering at an animal rescue in south america.
how the chimp
with hands so much like ours
after days of ambivalence
sits in his lap
and how days after that
the chimp sits in his lap
grabs his human hand
and holds it to her soft chimp belly.
how hard it was to say goodbye after a month.
tears in my eyes too.

6. stutters in the orchestration of time
i must go at this alone

7. muddy fingers on lady ferns
sorrel leaves sweetsour in my mouth
lungs full of spring tender green forest
ears carrying the roar
of water so fast it runs white

8. cupped hands
drinking cold snow melt
believing that it is clean

9. dropping loose leaf
into the wet rush
249 feet up
we stand at the edge
our words
pulled out of our mouths

10. my skin tells me
this is what the air felt like
when minna died

11. accompanied by four-day-old moon
we walk out
through the deepening dark
it feels good
to trust the ground beneath me to translate
what my eyes can’t see

clyde the glitterhorse

1. hot pink spray paint dashes
along dirty sidewalk

2. ‘every kid is a writer’
bumper sticker
near southeast 28th and ankeny

3. reunited with clyde the glitterhorse
next time, little machine, we’ll get you new chain rings

4. all about love
by bell hooks
this woman is
an empathetic brilliant genius of relevant discourse

5. day hollowed out
with waiting

6. full bus
two teenage girls
texting each other
across the aisle
separated by the density
of limbs and bodies

7. morning dream
the subterranean work
my short sharp nails across your chest
the ache in your shoulder and neck

8. shannon’s rooftop
pre-sunset light
illuminating our legs

9.  thinnest slice of moon
edges blurred
no longer hanging in sky
on the ride home

10. free hugs
if this doesn’t make you cry
just a little bit
i’m not sure what will